One of the chief espousers of this scenario is Adam Pilarski, senior VP for Avitas, a Chantilly, Va.-based aviation consulting company. At an International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading conference in March, he said it is possible that higher retirements and shorter economic life for aircraft are making enough room for new aircraft if oil prices remain high. But he believes oil prices are going to drop significantly.
For parts suppliers, the retirement of younger jets has “changed the face of the business completely,” says Boris Wolstenholme, CEO of U.K.-based A J Walter Aviation, a major, global spare parts supplier. Previously, parts suppliers paid a premium to get parts from an aircraft as young as the ones being retired now, he says. But now that more of those aircraft are being parted out, the prices have come down, leaving the companies that paid a premium in a difficult spot because most airlines today are ordering the parts only as needed, rather than to store for later use.
That development has not affected A J Walter, he says, because it already adjusted to airlines’ just-in-time delivery demands.
David Bridges, VP for sales and marketing at Boca Raton, Fla.-based global parts supplier VAS Aero Services, says the fast-changing market demands more attention and his company is now updating its forecast every quarter.
“I think the rules of the game have changed,” he says. Because of changes in the aircraft being parted out, “you’re not allowed to sit back and wait and see how things work out. You’re constantly managing the program.”